by Guest Blogger Leo Chan
In Q4 2019, my family went fully electric and added a second EV. The second EV introduced charging challenges. I thought we could share one NEMA 14-50 outlet by alternating charging cars every other day but due to long commutes, this wasn’t possible.
I needed a solution and wanted to leverage the NEMA 14-50 outlet in my garage; I was looking for a solution that:
- Allowed dual EV charging
- Was electrically safe and could automatically manage the power output to both cars
- Leveraged my existing charging infrastructure (NEMA 14-50 outlet)
- Could be portable – I could take it with me if I moved homes in the future (so I didn’t have additional sunk costs)
Introducing the ClipperCreek HCS-D40P Plug-in Level 2 Dual Charging Station. This was the only solution that checked all the boxes for me and I was delighted, no thrilled, to find it. It’s a new product that launched in Nov 2019 at a price of $1,369. With the federal tax credit of 30% of an EVSE and any local EVSE rebates ($250 in the state I live in), this drops the price to about $700. Not bad, considering most EVSE single chargers run at a price of $600.
My Thoughts on the ClipperCreek HCS-Dual EV Charger...
The ClipperCreek HCS-D40P is packaged very well. Each of the components are wrapped with plastic, charging components with bubble wrap and additional cardboard when needed, to ensure safety from scratches/movement during shipment.
My Initial impression when I took out the unit; I was impressed. ClipperCreek has produced a high-quality product – all of the components, even the charging holders. It’s the same level of quality I’ve seen with ClipperCreek products at my workplace.
Installation is a breeze. All that’s required is to mount the EVSE charger on the wall (with two screws) and plug it directly into the NEMA 14-50 outlet. Do know that the NEMA 14-50 plug only extends to a maximum of 12 inches in length; this is per regulation and you’ll want to be aware of this before you install. Also, you’ll need to make sure you drill into wood studs (or have appropriate wall anchors if you can’t) and that’s it. It only takes several minutes and your dual charging station is up and running.
One thing to mention, your NEMA 14-50 outlet may be upside down if you own a Nissan LEAF or a Tesla. That was the case for me. The grounding hole was on the top of my NEMA 14-50, not on the bottom like the ClipperCreek required. A simple rotation of the plug addresses this easily. If you’re not comfortable doing that, do hire an electrician.
The only other aspect of installation is optional – if you want to install the two charger holders (included with the HCS-Dual) and the additional cable cradle accessory, it’s two screws per unit.
Charging works perfectly. The ClipperCreek EVSE safely manages the power output depending on how many EVs you have plugged in. When I have one EV plugged in, the unit delivers a full 32A charge at 8kWh. When I plug in my second EV, the unit automatically halves the charge rate, to deliver 16A at 4kWh to both cars simultaneously. The HCS-DP seamlessly manages the power output in the background.
That’s exactly what I wanted. I didn’t want to worry about making sure my cars didn’t charge at the same time and risk blowing a fuse or worse for my electrical panel if I had put in two NEMA 14-50s in my garage. The ClipperCreek charging station definitely delivers.
There’s also three indicator lights on the unit, yellow/orange for power, red for fault and green for charging. The lights illuminate for the charging side you’re using. Straightforward and very easy to understand.
The ClipperCreek HCS-D40P Plug-in L2 Dual Charging Station is exactly the product I was looking for. It checked every single box: charged two EVs, electrically safe and managed power output automatically, leveraged my existing electrical infrastructure and is portable. With both the federal tax credit (expires 12/31/2021) and local EVSE rebates, the price is definitely affordable.
In summary, if you’re a two EV household and are looking for a safe, reliable way to charge your cars, I fully recommend the HCS-D. I have great confidence in this unit to keep my Tesla Model 3 and Nissan LEAF safely charged for years to come.
– Leo C.
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